Picture this scenario: you just ordered a brand new phone, the next Android device (substitute Apple’s iPhone if you like). All of a sudden, something goes wrong, and you need to contact the company where you purchased the phone. So you hunt around and finally locate the customer support number, dial it frantically (from another phone), enter your account number at the prompt, and then once you finally get connected with a live agent, you are asked to provide your account information again. How truly frustrating! I just provided it to you, why don’t you know me? The person who’s just spent hundreds of dollars on a new phone from your company?
Sound familiar? While it’s not intentional, sometimes an ACD/IVR system appears to be a maze (designed to keep out customers) rather than akin to a red carpet designed to lead customers to the right information. A great customer experience is providing the right solution, to the right problem, at the right time, and doing it in a way that delights the customer. That’s it.
Targeted Customer Service
The idea behind targeted customer service is to provide specific levels of service based on different customer needs, preferences, or importance to the company. Service targeting is built on a foundation of good customer segmentation. A simple way to segment your customers is by revenue range. For example, $10k – $100k is segment A, $100k – $300k is segment B, etc. Customer segmentation is important, for a variety of reasons, but specifically in the customer service world, to ensure you’re providing the best possible service to your most valuable customers. Here are just a few simple ways you can leverage the power of technology to target specific service to your customer segments.
Route Customers to the Right Person
With today’s ACD/IVR technology, it’s possible to prompt the customer for their account number, then route them to a specific group or even individual that can help them. Here are some options:
- Assigned Account Manager: If some of your customers have specifically assigned account managers, or even pooled reps, instead of routing them to the normal pool, send them to their designated account manager. One of the most frustrating things when talking over the phone with someone new is explaining the history behind your call. An assigned account or customer success manager should be able to bridge that gap, and address the issue quickly and efficiently.
- Last Person Touched: If a customer is calling again to address a previous issue, route the customer to the last person who helped them (you’ll need to leverage a CRM or other source for this information). If the agent is busy, you could even offer the customer the option to wait or be placed in the general queue to receive help by the next available agent.
Provide the Right Information
Now that we know where to route the customer, we should immediately ensure the agent has all the relevant information at his or her fingertips. Customers should be greeted with “Hello Mr. Olesen, thanks for calling. How can I help you?” not “Will you please provide your account information?” The former approach allows you to establish a strong connection with the customer right at the start of the conversation. The system should look up the customer’s information and prompt the agent with everything needed to start a great customer experience.
Prioritize Customer Interactions
Finally, based on segmentation approaches mentioned above, the customer should be prioritized in the queue. A strategic or high profile customer should be placed front and center in the queue to ensure their issues and questions are addressed as quickly as possible.
A powerful cloud-based ACD/IVR system, such as the one provided by inContact, allows you the flexibility to enable the features above to provide a truly differentiated service designed to delight your customers.